Projects Cohesion and Prism


Project Cohesion (since 2006) and Project Prism (since 2003) serve as the framework for international cooperation in matters related to trafficking in chemicals used in the illicit manufacture of drugs, specifically cocaine and heroin (Project Cohesion), and amphetamine-types stimulants and other synthetic drugs (Project Prism).

The two projects, which are steered by the INCB Precursor Task Force, provide platforms for time-bound intelligence-gathering operations with a view to collecting information on potential gaps or weak links in international precursor control, on new trafficking trends, on modi operandi, on the actual use of the target chemicals in the illicit manufacture of drugs and on how those chemicals are diverted to enter the clandestine laboratory environment.

   

Project Cohesion carried out the following operations, focusing particularly on acetic anhydride: DICE I (2008), DICE II (2009), Eagle Eye (2013-2014) and Follow me (2017). Under Project Prism, operations focused mainly on chemicals used for the illicit manufacture of methamphetamine: Operation Crystal Flow (2006) and Ice Block (2007), focusing on ephedrine and pseudoephedrine; PILA (2009-2010) on pharmaceutical preparations containing ephedrines; and PAAD (2011) on phenylacetic acid and its derivatives. Operation EPIG (2012) focused on ephedrine and pseudoephedrine markets in Africa, while Operation MMA (2015) targeted methylamine, and Operation Missing Links (2016/17) the "captagon" precursor market. Joint activities also looked at emerging precursors (2015), fentanyl and other synthetic opioids and their precursors (2016/2018), and illicit drug manufacturing equipment (2019).

The projects are thus aimed at assisting Governments in ensuring the necessary level of alertness and developing specific risk profiles to prevent future diversions and - ultimately - to identify the trafficking organizations involved. Participants in Project Cohesion and Project Prism are continually alerted to suspicious shipments and actual and attempted diversions of precursors, as well as newly emerging precursors. Alerts occur through Special Alerts, and automated push notifications via the INCB Precursors Incident Communication System PICS (for registered users only).

Under the two projects, the success of case cooperation at the operational level critically depends on rapid and direct communication between the authorities concerned. Governments are therefore encouraged to review the contact lists available on the secure website and ensure that the details of their focal points for Project Cohesion and Project Prism are up to date. Updates to focal points can be made using the following form.


For more information on Project Cohesion or Project Prism send an email to: incb.precursors@un.org

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